The Unthanks have a busy 2012 schedule with extended UK tour
Award-winning folk outfit to perform intimate spring shows plus summer dates with Brighouse & Rastrick Brass Band, tickets on sale now
The northern county of Northumberland is steeped in folk music history, influenced primarily by exported songs and music from neighbouring Southern Scotland and other nearby English districts in Durham and Tyne and Wear. The area even has its own type of bagpipe, namely the Northumbrian smallpipe, making Northumbria something of a unique locale in which to take up an instrument. Famous names from the county include '70s prog-folkers Lindisfarne, pipes-queen Kathryn Tickell and the band you are about to read about, award-winning The Unthanks.
Formerly known as the rather more long-winded Rachel Unthank and the Winterset until 2009, the more streamlined The Unthanks have been eschewing the traditions of folk at every turn. The first album under the new name was voted Folk Album of the Year 2009 by The Guardian and Mojo magazine and, despite being a collection of mainly plaintive traditional songs, there was thankfully little mention of a 'Danny Boy' or other oft-recorded laments. For album two in 2010, entitled 'Last', they covered Tom Waits and King Crimson, which in so-called folk-circles is known as throwing a curveball. This excellent album reached the UK top 40 and garnered critical acclaim from several corners.
For album three however, they downed their writing tools altogether and plumped for an entire album of cover versions, choosing just two contrasting songwriters in Robert Wyatt and Antony & the Johnsons. 'The Songs of Robert Wyatt and Antony & The Johnsons' (natty title) proved to be a sympathetic take on the pair's languid songs and a perfect addition to the band's ever-increasing repertoire.
During 2012, you can witness this huge advancement in recorded choice by seeing The Unthanks perform in different formations. An intimate tour (kind of unplugged) will begin next week, which will involve the group performing in small halls and churches around the UK throughout April and May, including Newbrough, Ely (sold out), Redhill and Notting Hill. Tickets vary in price, mostly from £14 to £17.50.
The band's much-publicised collaboration with Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band will then resume on 9th June in Halifax, before heading to the No Direction Home 2012 festival in Nottinghamshire and shows in Liverpool, Grassington and the newly-added York Minster gig on 17th August. All of the above dates are on sale now, with the Brighouse dates weighing in at around £20 upwards.
- Thu 25th Apr 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreSt Paul's Church (Birmingham)Buy Tickets
- Sat 27th Apr 2019 The UnthanksSt George's Church (Brighton)Buy Tickets
- Sun 28th Apr 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreThe Quarterhouse (Folkestone)Buy Tickets
- Mon 29th Apr 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreEpsom Playhouse (Epsom)Buy Tickets
- Tue 30th Apr 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreTramshed (Cardiff)Buy Tickets
- Wed 1st May 2019 The Unthanks, Aidan O'Rourke, Kit Downes: Unaccompanied, as We AreSt George's Hall (Bristol)Buy Tickets
- Thu 2nd May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreUnion Chapel (Islington)Buy Tickets
- Tue 7th May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreSt Philip with St Stephen Church (Salford)Buy Tickets
- Tue 7th May 2019 The UnthanksSt Phillips & Sacred Trinity Churches (Salford)Buy Tickets
- Wed 8th May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreEpstein Theatre (formerly Neptune) (Liverpool)Buy Tickets
- Thu 9th May 2019 The UnthanksThe Platform (Morecambe)Buy Tickets
- Sat 11th May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We ArePleasance Theatre (Edinburgh)Buy Tickets
- Tue 14th May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreThe Assembly (Leamington Spa)Buy Tickets
- Wed 15th May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreOpen (Norwich)Buy Tickets
- Fri 17th May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreNewark Palace Theatre (Newark)Buy Tickets
- Thu 23rd May 2019 The Unthanks: Unaccompanied, as We AreLeft Bank [formerly St Margaret of Antioch] (Leeds)Buy Tickets